Biodiversity and Wine Initiative (BWI)
Boschendal Farm is close to becoming the 16th BWI Champion in South Africa.
We are committed to the conservation, preservation and restoration of our environment by implementation of biological farming practices that promote a habitat of biodiversity both in the vineyards and surrounds.
Almost half of the total land has been set aside for conservation with a dedicated investment in our environmental management strategy.
Integrated Production of Wine (IPW)
Boschendal complies with all viticulture, cellar and bottling operations subscribed by standards set out by IPW. South Africa is unique being the first country to adopt an industry-wide system to promote sustainable grape growing and environmentally sound cellar practices guaranteed by the sustainability certification seal on all of our wines.
Water Saving Strategies
Boschendal has invested heavily in an assertive alien clearing project to remove invasive alien trees and plants. More than 100 hectares are in the transition back to their natural state with meaningful liberation of natural water supply.
Irrigation management has been adjusted high evaporation sprinkler systems to conservation efficient drippers with scheduling with the help of neutron probes that measure the water in the soil and by the pratice of Regulated Deficit Irrigation ( RDI ) the correct amount of water needed by the vineyards to produce superb quality grapes is meted out. These are used to create the highest quality Boschendal wines.
We are continuously experimenting with cover crops and our vineyards are used by the Government Research Institute Nietvoorbij for trials. Boschendal is now using cover crops that are only planted every three years. Every year these cover crops grow from seeds from previous years. This enhances the soil life in the vineyards and efficiently builds organic matter to bind carbon for an active soil food web that utilizes nitrogen from the air limiting the need for fertilisers. An active soil food web also liberates nutrients previous unavailable in the soil available for a better soil structure.
Another big advantage of cover crops is the preservation of soil moisture and to save water and improve quality. Cover crops also inhibit weed growth limiting the amount of herbicide sprays, and effectively curbing carbon emissions by reduced tractor movement.
Boschendal have long since abandoned traditional fertiliser programs that involve only Phosphate, Nitrogen and Potassium additions, but rather utilise a broad spectrum of nutrients for a balanced natural soil life.
Pest and Disease Management
Boschendal are increasingly using organic and biological control of pests and diseases by way of natural predators and strict withholding periods.
To accomplish this a monitoring system is used to ascertain the type and number of the pest to be controlled so thy these can be specifically targeted rather than the traditional ‘shotgun method’ that erradicates everything.